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Fear in evangelism can be overcome as believers focus on obedience, joy in Jesus, SWBTS prof says

NASHVILLE (BP) – A leading voice in evangelism training and education has an encouraging word for believers who face fear when they want to share their faith. Matt Queen says fear can be overcome by redefining success when it comes to evangelism.

“Our success in evangelism is in our obedience. It’s actually in doing it,” says Queen.

Queen serves as the interim provost and vice president for Academic Administration, professor of evangelism, and L.R. Scarborough Chair of Evangelism (“Chair of Fire”) at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is this week’s guest on Baptist Press This Week.

Queen says obedience in sharing his faith is rooting in the joy of his salvation. In the interview he recounts the story of coming to faith in Christ as a child in Asheville, N.C.

He says he vividly remembers the night he realized he wasn’t right with God and repented of his sins and placed his faith in Jesus.

“I went out to tell all the kids that were playing tag. I said, ‘I’m saved. I’m saved. I’m saved.’ And I remember wanting a microphone big enough to broadcast it to the whole world,” Queen said.

He said in the weeks and years ahead his father would take him along on evangelistic endeavors.

Queen is hopeful that trends in the SBC are reversing. “We’re not where we need to be, but we’re definitely not where we’ve been,” he said pointing to a forthcoming study from Lifeway Research.

The professor also talked about his role with the North American Mission Board to make an update to the popular Who’s Your One? evangelism strategy. Queen says it helps move from “just praying for your one to now sharing with your one.”

In the interview, Queen offers helpful tips for believers to find easy in-roads in conversations to bring up the Good News.

While he says he places a high value on pastors, he wants to encourage every Christian to share their faith.

“While it was a pastor that led me to faith in Christ, it was my mother who took me to the pastor. And it was a Sunday School teacher who taught me the Bible.… It is people that fill the churches, that serve the Lord, that maybe have no seminary training, you are important to the evangelistic work of the kingdom of God as any pastor is. We’re all in this together,” he said.

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